3 New Media Strategies Every Business Should Know to Survive the Shrinking Newspaper Market

Newspapers have been rapidly vanishing from the American landscape, as consumers increasingly get their news online. With CNN.com or The New York Times as a person’s homepage, why would they need a newspaper dropped on their doorstep every morning? As this media outlet continues to shrink, there are three new media strategies that every business should know.

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The Shrinking Newspaper Market: 3 New Media Strategies Every Business Should Know

Newspapers are fading as a news source, with many major papers deciding to focus more on monetizing their online content than creating paper versions delivered to customers each day. Smaller city papers are being combined to create one major paper to serve an entire major metropolitan area, as even those subscribers who are left are now choosing Sunday-only service.

What does that mean for the small business owner? Previous efforts to get information to the public through newspapers are now being shifted online. But does that mean print media should be abandoned? Here are a few things small business owners should consider when planning a campaign.

Specific Demographic

The reduction in newspaper readership means small businesses can no longer assume one advertisement or piece of coverage will be seen by everyone in a city. Newspaper readers are a very specific demographic today, and it’s important for a business owner to know whether that readership fits his or her intended audience.

According to data from the Newspaper Association of America (NAA), if you’re trying to reach the 18-34 demographic, a newspaper isn’t the best place to reach your customers. The primary readership for newspapers is aged 35 and older, with nearly half of that group being aged 55 and older. Readership is almost evenly divided between male and female, although slightly more women read newspapers than men.

Targeted Online Papers

The move toward the Internet means newspapers can now segment their target market. One great example of this is Blue Sky Innovation, an online section of the Chicago Tribune that is targeted specifically to entrepreneurs. Today, newspapers are no longer limited by geographic boundaries and are instead able to focus on niche audiences potentially located around the globe.

This is also good news for business marketers, who will now be able to choose an online media outlet that will spread its message to those who will be most interested in it. This could put local businesses at a disadvantage, leaving them unable to compete with businesses that have a wider audience range.

Universal Messages

When preparing a marketing campaign, it’s important that businesses take a more universal approach. Campaigns should be designed to deploy on social media, print media and online media at once, with businesses understanding that when they pitch a newspaper, that message will likely appear both in the print and online versions of the newspaper.

With the Internet changing the way traditional media operates, it’s constantly evolving. Businesses that pay attention to these changes can leverage them to their advantage, trumping the competition and reaching consumers with their messages. Marketers are beginning to realize they can segment their marketing campaigns to reach different customers through the media they’re most likely to be using. While newspapers are cutting staff and seeing reduced circulations, they’ll likely be around for many years to come, if only in an online format rather than paper.

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